Saturday, October 29, 2011

Little things

Big MacIn the short story "Strange Creatures" Kristine Kathryn Rusch writes:
Retsler reached inside, and pulled out a Big Mac and fries...He pulled the wrapper back and took a bite, tasting mustard, catsup, pickles and mayonnaise long before he got to the meat.
I'm guessing it's been a long time since she had a Big Mac. If she ever has. Remember the jingle?

Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame-seed bun.

No mustard. No catsup. And especially no mayonnaise, which doesn't come on any McDonald's burger. Jolted me right out of the story for a moment...

Yes, I know the special sauce may well have catsup and mayo in it, but I really doubt anybody, especially a dog-tired cop who thinks Big Macs and fries smell like "sugar and grease", has a refined-enough to palate to actually taste them. And there's still no mustard. (And the onions! What about the onions? not to mention the cheese...) In other words, a Big Mac is not just a regular hamburger. Would it have killed her to taste one before writing about it in such detail?

Labels: ,

5 Comments:

At 2:43 PM, October 29, 2011 Anonymous Picky had this to say...

I have eaten once at McDonald's. I do not intend to repeat the experience.

 
At 3:43 PM, October 29, 2011 Blogger The Ridger, FCD had this to say...

Certainly your option and your right. De gustibus etc.

 
At 6:29 PM, October 29, 2011 Anonymous Kathie had this to say...

There are plenty of things that even good authors (let alone translators!) have written about despite having never experienced -- in many cases, fortunately!

Being vegetarian, other than an emergency orange juice I haven't eaten at McD's since, while on a day-trip with my (now-late) dad in winter '93, I had a large salad with diet dressing in Ukiah -- it was that or starve :-(

 
At 7:08 PM, October 30, 2011 Blogger The Ridger, FCD had this to say...

Of course I don't say people can only write about what they know, but there is such a thing as research. And when you get a detail like this wrong - lots of people do eat Big Macs, after all - it jumps out at a reader.

 
At 6:33 PM, October 31, 2011 Anonymous Mark had this to say...

I'm a little late on this, but I agree. Details gotten wrong like this jerk you out of the story. It's no longer a world, it's words written by a person who got something wrong. This happens occasionally and argues strongly to write what you know, because otherwise, as sure as the world, if you don't know, someone else will.

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post

Links to this post:

Create a Link

     <-- Older Post                     ^ Home                    Newer Post -->